- Have you recently become concerned about your parent’s continued health and safety in their current living situation?
- Are you unsure whether to offer them assistance with “Ageing-In-Place” or suggest that they “Move or Relocate”?
- Not sure how to broach the subject of changing their lifestyle with them?
You are not alone.
In Canada, there are 4,945,000 seniors aged 65 and over. Of these individuals, 92.1% lived in private households or dwellings (as part of couples, alone or with others). **1 This means that there are 11,941,000 Baby Boomers **2 (children of these seniors) just like you who are likely to be asking themselves these same questions in the near future.
The following links have been provided to help you define the difference between Ageing-In-Place and Downsizing/Relocation.
If the reasons for your concerns are considerable and you feel that they require immediate attention, contact the local community health organization in the area that your parents live. They can be reached through HealthLink BC, **3 your local hospital auxiliary or by calling 811 (Nurse’s line). Any one of these options will be able to provide you with urgent care suggestions.
By making a list of your concerns and thoroughly researching the available support services &/or residential living opportunities, you will be better prepared to offer loving, supportive advice with respect to their current living situation and provide promising alternative options.
We suggest that you start by asking yourself a few questions:
- What signs have you seen that lead you to believe that your parent(s) may be struggling or at risk? “12 SIGNS AN AGEING PARENT MAY BE AT RISK OR IN NEED OF ASSISTANCE”
- Am I able to provide all the help that they need? **4 **5
- Do I have time/knowledge to research third parties that can assist them with their challenges?
All too often the physical or mental challenges brought about by the natural progression of aging are mistakenly misinterpreted as a diminished ability to make decisions. Tread carefully when imposing your beliefs regarding their right to continued independence or their ability to make genuinely appropriate choices as to how or where they will reside. Regardless of their degree of limitations, everyone wants and needs to have a voice in the decisions affecting them personally.
During these conversations, patiently listening to your parents responses to your questions paying close attention to what it is that causes them fear or anxiety. They will let you know what is required to help them feel safe, secure and happy. That, after all, is the goal!
Remember that all of the decisions do not need to be made in one sitting. Break up the decision making into issue specific topics. By beginning with the items that require the most immediate attention and resolving these first (even if the resolution is only a temporary solution) and leaving the ones that are not urgent to be address at the next meeting(s), this will help you and your parents to feel less stressed and increasingly motivated to continue creating a plan for aging.
Before you know it, together you will have designed and agreed upon a plan that provides a comfortable degree of support for your parents and peace of mind for you.
At any time during this process, should find yourself in need assistance with researching, creating or implementing your support plan, please contact us at Next Chapter Senior Services.
Our mission at Next Chapter Senior Services is to provide transitional support to seniors and their families.